What age to jump my horse????

Discussion in 'Horse Training' started by guiness03, Mar 6, 2010.

  1. guiness03

    guiness03 Registered

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    i wanna start training my horse to jump when he is 4.
    but today my trainer told me he is actually 4. because hes in his 4th year as of january 1st. but he dosent turn 4 till june. its confusing. but shud i start now then? or when he actually turns four?

    and any guidelines to how much to jump at what age? if i jump once a week??

    oh and he is also a paint. if that helps? and he is on joint supplements and hoof supplements. specifically smart mantience 1 and smart hoof
     






  2. Artrageous

    Artrageous Senior Member

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    I've heard you shouldn't start jumping until they're 6 at least. Jumping is hard on their legs. Now, I think that may be with a rider, so i would think it would be okay to let them free jump and get a feel for it, but I wouldn't jump him with a rider until he's 6.
     
  3. SuZQuzie

    SuZQuzie Senior Member+

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    I would have no problem starting a 3.5 year old over some small Xs under saddle and gradually working up to 2'9"-3' over the next few months. BUT, that would be me. I know how to keep my balance on a horse over a variety of fences and overjumps. If I was less experienced, I would ave someone else start them. A young horse has enough to worry about when starting over fences other than the rider's balance.
     
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  4. gypsygirl3

    gypsygirl3 Senior Member

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    ^^^^^^i agree
     
  5. KKendall

    KKendall Full Member

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    It depends on your horse but I agree with Artageous, I'd wait until he was 6 to start more serious training but there are a ton of things you can do now to get him ready! I would defiantly start working with poles on the ground, you can do mini courses with just poles, so he can start getting an idea on striding before you actually put a jump in front of him. As far as free jumping, go for it! I wouldn't ask for more than 3'0 right now but it will benefit him a lot and let him start to figure out how to maneuver all four legs over the fence :). When his actual 4th birthday comes around, it would be alright to start doing cavaletti and maybe a tiny little cross rail, when I say tiny cross rail I really mean small, less than a foot high at the center so he could even walk over it. As long as you don't jump every single day, it's good to start working on jumping basics now, so when you actually start jumping him when he's around 6 you will have a head start. There's nothing wrong with doing pole work, cavalettis, and free jumping now, I would be careful with free jumping, but doing everything else keeps your workouts interesting to your horse and will help make actual jumping less scary to him. Good Luck!
     
  6. Martini!

    Martini! Senior Member+

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    I second the starting him on ground rails right now and waiting to start actual jump training. I think 6 is a bit excessive, but under 4 is definitely too young. I also agree with getting someone else to help you if you are not a really experienced jumper.
     
  7. cassidy

    cassidy Senior Member+

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    well u can do light jumping (the basics) at four an gradually work your way up but dont push them to hard to young as it can cause more harm than good and damage their legs
     
  8. kmdstar

    kmdstar Senior Member+

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    I think people should specify what height exactly is "small" because alot of times on here I see people say "Yeah, I jumped today...nothing big, just about 2'6"" Okay...then what is BIG? :eek: Anyway my point is, telling the OP to jump small could mean 6 inches or 3 feet.

    I wouldn't want to jump a horse younger than 4 1/2 or 5. I personally would wait a little longer to jump your horse :)
     
  9. JBandRio

    JBandRio Senior Member+

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    At 4/almost 4, there is no reason he cannot be introduced to small xrails, small oxers, and small grids. At this point it's 99% about the flatwork between the obstacles anyway, with the obstacles set low so it can 1) walk over them if necessary in order to learn that once he's pointed at something, he goes over, period, and 2) he can learn proper striding while learning proper takeoff technique while learning to balance you at takeoff/in the air/landing. Jumps absolutely do not have to be high to learn those things.
     
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  10. guiness03

    guiness03 Registered

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    how bog is small? like specifically??
     






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